A Beautiful Friendship
Thomas Calabrese – Definition of Mendacious; lying, untruthful, dishonest, deceitful, double-dealing, two faced, insincere, hypocritical. A sycophant is a person who tries to please someone in order to gain a personal advantage and is willing to behave as if he has no code of honor or self-respect. He is sometimes called a lackey, toady, apple polisher, bootlicker, fawner or groveler. A mendacious sycophant is one of the lowest forms of human life and should be avoided or eliminated.
Alexander McMurray was a philologist (a language historian) who studied how languages originate, are organized and change as time passes. He studied at UCLA, where he got his bachelor’s degree in philosophy then got his PhD in linguistics from Southern Methodist University, with a certificate in cognitive science. McMurray wrote extensively on the English language and one of his most renown papers were how adjectives interact with verbs. Over the years Alexander taught at Cal State San Marcos, became a script doctor for the movie industry, collaborated with songwriters to develop memorable lyrics for songs, created slogans and catchphrases for the advertising industry and edited speeches for politicians. He loved what he did and part of his extensive research led him to conclude how the mind interprets meaning during periods of communication.
A message is 7 percent verbal, 38 percent sign language and gesturing and 55 percent visual. The conclusion was that 93 percent of communication is “nonverbal” in nature. With this additional information, Alexander became a value consultant for law enforcement and defense attorneys. He could listen to a witness or a suspect and be able to tell with a reasonable amount of certainty if the person was telling the truth or being deceitful. The other talent that Alexander brought to the table was advising detectives and lawyers on what questions to ask in order to get the answers they wanted.
Alexander McMurray permanently moved to Bonsall, California from Culver City with his family and built his dream home on a two acre parcel of land on a hilltop with an attached state of the art sound studio. With his years of experience and high tech equipment, Alexander could analyze phonation, pitch and loudness of a person’s voice with perfect accuracy. His two children, Kate and Jim did not have the intuitive nature of their father, but possessed special talents of their own. Kate was an astute businesswoman and when she became old enough, she began scheduling appointments, negotiating contracts collecting payments and doing all of the accounting. This was something that Alexander had no aptitude or interest in doing. As for his son, Jim, he loved the technical aspects of the business and kept the sound and recording equipment in top working condition. When some new cutting edge device hit the market, Jim would tell his Dad if it was something of value to the company. McMurray Consulting prospered and Alexander realized that if he retired, his children would not be able to do the analytical part of the business. He did his best to educate Kate and Jim, but they did not have the mindset required to see words and evaluate people like him. Artists have children who can’t draw, musicians have offsprings who cannot play an instrument and singers have descendants who couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. It is just the way that life is. Forty years in the business and Alexander McMurray had earned the respect and admiration of people and clients all over the world, but sooner rather than later, it would come to an end. McMurray provided a good living for his family and that was the most important thing to him. There was only option, work as hard as he could to make sure that his wife, son and daughter were well taken care when he did call it quits.
Surprisingly, when it seemed like there were no other options, something appeared on the horizon, it was only a glimmer of hope, but it was something to hold on to for Alexander. His daughter’s son, Matthew was an unusual young boy and his grandfather saw unlimited potential in his grandson. Matthew McMurray was intelligent, clear headed, intuitive and inquisitive with a gift for semantics. Alexander saw a lot of himself in Matt and he knew he had the skills and temperament to take over for him when he retired.
After graduating high school, Alexander expected to his grandson to take a more active role in the family business. Matt had worked with his grandfather, his Uncle Jim and his mother so he knew everything about the daily operations. It was a sunny morning and Matt had finished his morning workout and came to see his grandfather, “I’m thinking about joining the Navy, I want to be a Seal, don’t know if I’m up to the task, but I’d like to give it a try,” Matt said.
Alexander truly felt that his grandson’s intention were sincere and expressed his loving opinion, “To be honest, I am very disappointed that you won’t be joining me, your mom and uncle in the family business, but I’m extremely proud that you have chosen to serve your country in a time when many people your age have no desire to serve in the military. Some even dislike our country and wish for its demise. A big part of our business is about finding the truth and I know you well enough to know this decision is coming from a righteous place inside your heart,” Alexander embraced his grandson in a sign of appreciation and love.
Matt succeeded in his quest to be a Navy Seal and served with honor and distinction over the next ten years. Whenever he had opportunity he returned home and spent hours with his grandfather discussing semantics and the current projects at McMurray Consulting.
It was while he was doing cold weather training at the Mountain Warfare Training Center at Toiyabe National Forest near Bridgeport, California that Matt received a phone call from his mother, “You know that your grandfather is only working until you‘re done with the Navy. Your Uncle Jim and I told him that we’ll hold down the fort until you’re ready, but we all know we can’t do what he does…only you can.”
“So what do you want me to do?” Matt asked.
Kate continued, “His doctor told him to start taking it easy, the stress of traveling and dealing with too many assignments is taking a toll on him. He said, I’ll slow down when Matt gets home. Once you start turning down too many jobs, people stop coming to you? I can’t tell you what to do, son, but I thought you needed to know.”
“Thanks Mom, you did the right thing by calling me. Like grandfather says, God, family, country…in that order,” Matt said.
When he finished his cold weather training, Matt McMurray filed his paperwork for separation from the Navy Seals. It was a bittersweet decision, but the right one.
When Matt got back to Bonsall, it was like he had never been away. He slipped right into the groove and his grandfather felt a surge of energy and joy at having his grandson by his side again.
The former President of the United States was facing a litany of charges from jurisdictions all over the country. There was a civil trial in New York City and Ronald Travis was being sued for one billion dollars for real estate fraud. The Defense team knew that in a fair trial, they would have no trouble in prevailing, but this was a politically charged environment with biasness and anything was possible. Attorney Molly Delaney contacted Alexander McMurray, “We would like to retain your consulting services and are willing to pay $25,000 per day and expenses.”
“I like former President Travis so McMurray Consulting accepts your offer. I’ll transfer you over to my daughter who will handle the contract and payment schedule. When do you need us there?”
“Tomorrow, the prosecution is calling in some witnesses that we need your expertise with,” Molly said.
“It’s three o’clock in the afternoon right now, that’s cutting it kind of close,” Alexander said.
“I’ve got a Gulfstream waiting for you at the Carlsbad Airport,” Molly said.
“Am I that predictable…that you knew that I would say yes?” Alexander asked.
Molly confessed, “I do my homework like you and I was cautiously, but optimistically hopeful.”
“I like your style already,” Alexander said.
Alexander and Matthew left California at 8PM that night and were in the courtroom at 11AM the next morning. Grandfather and Grandson sat next to each other and took notes as the district attorney and witnesses spoke, but did not discuss what they saw and heard. When the court adjourned for day, Alexander and Matt went back to their hotel room and compared their observations for the first time then compiled a list of questions for the defense attorneys to ask the witnesses. When the prosecution rested their case, the Defense was a juggernaut during their cross examinations, tripping up deceitful witnesses with skilled questioning.
The Defense was scheduled to give their closing arguments the following day so Molly invited Alex and Matt to join her for dinner at the recently renovated View Restaurant, New York City’s only revolving rooftop restaurant perched on top of the Marriott Marquis Hotel.
Molly said, “You are every bit as good as I was led to believe and I am sincerely grateful for your help. I am going to be working on closing arguments tonight. I was hoping that you would take a look at it when I’m finished?”
“You’re our client, we serve at your pleasure” Matt said.
“I concur with my grandson,” Alexander said.
Alexander, Matt and Molly were being watched by a three man surveillance team that was hired by the deep state cabal who had pushed for prosecution of the former President. The head of the team was on the phone with his supervisor and reported what was going at the restaurant. “Right now they are just sitting around eating their dinner.”
The man said, “We’re losing this case and even though we got the judge in our pocket, he’s going to have rule against us unless something drastic happens. Molly Delaney cannot be allowed to make her closing arguments tomorrow.”
The man in the restaurant asked for clarification, “Please more specific.”
“Stop her, that means do whatever is necessary!” The man ordered before he disconnected the call, “You are supposed to be professionals, act like it and earn your pay!”
Alexander, Matt and Molly finished their meals got up from their table and as they were leaving the restaurant, Matt made eye contact with the men from the surveillance team and stopped in mid stride for several seconds before moving on. Alexander felt the tension in the non-verbal interaction and asked, “Is something wrong?”
“Just thought I recognized one of those men,” Matt replied.
The trio walked into the lobby, over to the elevator and got in. Molly pressed the button for the 18th floor. Just before the door closed, the three men got in and Alexander asked, “What floor?”
One of the men commented as he looked at the lighted floor display panel, “We’re on the 18th as well.”
When the elevator reached its destination, Alexander, Matt and Molly turned left and went down the hallway. The three men hesitated and went right. One of the men glanced over his shoulder to see where the trio was going. Molly stopped at room 1813 and said, “I’ll call you when I’m finished, I’ll try not to make it too late.”
“I’ll be up no matter how late it is,” Matt said and walked with his grandfather to room 1821. As they entered, Matt looked back and saw the three men moving toward Molly’s room. He closed the door and said, “I forgot something in the restaurant, I’ll be right back.”
Alexander cautioned his grandson, “We’re in the business of being able to tell when people are being deceptive with the truth…be careful, Matthew.”
“I will, grandfather. I should know better than to try and put something passed you.”
One of the men knocked on Molly’s door and said, “Hotel Maintenance…we had a water leak in the room above you and we need to check the ceiling to make sure it doesn’t fall in on you.”
Just as Molly opened the door, Matt came up behind them, grabbed one of their pistols and killed all three men in a matter of second. They fell into the room as Molly stepped aside. She stared in momentarily disbelief and Matt said, “Sorry for the interruption, you better finish in our room while I relocate our surprise visitors.”
Molly stammered, “I can see why they would be a distraction.”
The next day court proceedings began and Molly Delaney wasn’t in attendance. The courtroom was packed with reporters and District Attorney Jack Smythe addressed Judge Arthur Mendron, “I would like to make a motion for a summary judgment. It is obvious that Defense Attorney Molly Delaney is not going to show up for her closing arguments.”
Before Judge Mendron could make a ruling, Molly entered the courtroom, “Sorry for the being late, your honor, I had an unavoidable situation at my hotel. If you would like to call management to confirm my statement, I have their number?”
Judge Mendron looked at the District Attorney and swallowed hard, “That won’t be necessary. Please procced with all due haste, Miss Delaney.”
Alexander and Matt watched from their seats in the gallery as Molly gave a mesmerizing and convincing speech on why President Travis should not be convicted. She cited a dozen cases to support her statements and was so good with her presentation that the people in the courtroom were tempted to give Molly a standing ovation, but they controlled themselves. Molly saved the best for last. She looked at the District Attorney with fire in her eyes and said with conviction, “This case should have never been filed. It was motivated by hate, greed, arrogance and is a disgrace to the American justice system and our country!”
Judge Mendron had no other choice, but to dismiss the charges against President Travis and his decision enraged his political party. He later resigned from the bench after being relentlessly ridiculed in the media.
Several months passed and President Travis invited the entire McMurray family to join him for Thanksgiving at his private resort, Vista Del Largo on Saturn Island in Florida. After partaking in a feast fit for royalty, President Travis turned to Matt, “Take a walk with me.”
While strolling side by side down the flower-lined path through the perfectly manicured grounds of the compound, President Travis, “I’m looking for a discreet person to work for me, this would be strictly off the books.”
“Doing what?” Matt asked.
President Travis quipped “Your mission, Matthew McMurray, should you decide to accept it, is to help me rid the world of socialists, globalists, Marxists, traffickers, traitors, terrorists, criminals, vermin and mendacious sycophants. Should you be caught or killed, I will disavow any knowledge of your actions.”
“I wasn’t sure until you mentioned mendacious sycophants, but that hooked me, I’m all in,” Matt smiled, “As much as I like the spoken and written word, communications isn’t the only weapon in my arsenal.”
President Travis put his hand on Matt’s should and said, “Matthew, I believe this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.”